A delicious, vibrant soup that’s sweet but also savory. The lentils give the soup body, protein, and fiber, as well as minerals. Carrots are a fantastic vegetable and are great for warming up various constitutions, especially when eaten in the cooler months. This is typical of an Ayurvedic soup as it’s light and nourishing—the simpler the food, the easier it is to digest. Eat as an appetizer or stir in some cooked rice for a more substantial meal.–Anjum Anand
LC What the Heck's Ayurveda (and How do I Pronounce It, Please)? Note
Okay. Here’s our terribly oversimplified attempt at explaining Ayurveda (pronounced aa-yur-VAY-dah. It’s an ancient medical tradition in Indian culture, and it’s founded on the principle that there are three basic body types, or, if you will, constitutions–vata, pitta, and kapha. Certain dietary and lifestyle choices either bring you into balance or bump you further out of balance. Scoff if you will, but it’s been around a heck of a lot longer than any of us—five millennia at last count. Book after book has been written on the topic, and a simple Google search will turn up countless little quizzes you can take to find out your body type and how to take what Ayurvedic practitioners refer to as “intelligent action” in your life. Don’t know about you, but we could sure use some more intelligence in our lives. What are you waiting for?
Carrot and Lentil Soup Recipe
- Quick Glance
- 20 M
- 40 M
- Serves 2, generously
- 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 teaspoons ghee or vegetable oil
- 1/2 medium onion, chopped
- 1/2 to 1 teaspoon finely chopped ginger, depending on how zingy you like things
- 2 small garlic cloves, chpped
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper
- 11 ounces carrots (that’s 3 to 5 smallish or slender carrots), peeled and thickly sliced
- 2 tablespoons red lentils, washed
- 2 3/4 cups vegetable stock, chicken stock, or 1/2 teaspoon vegetable bouillon stock powder dissolved in 2 3/4 cups water
- Handful fresh cilantro, finely chopped
- 1. Heat the ghee or oil in a small nonstick saucepan. Add the onion and cook gently until golden, then add the ginger and garlic and stir for 40 to 60 seconds. Add the coriander, cumin, and salt and pepper and stir for 20 seconds. Add the carrots, lentils, and stock and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer for 20 minutes.
- 2. Take the pan off the heat and use an immersion blender to puree it or set aside for at least 10 minutes and then puree it in a blender. If the consistency is too thick for your liking, just add a little water and blitz again.
- 3. Reheat over low heat, taste, and adjust the seasoning accordingly. Serve topped with cilantro.
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Testers ChoiceTesters Choice
Oct 17, 2011
I must admit that when I first read this recipe, I wasn’t expecting much. Yet as soon as I served it, everyone’s reaction was incredible. The taste was smooth, a tad spicy, filled with flavors (including a touch of Indian), and powerful. I was worried my toddler would think it was too spicy, so I decided to add a little heavy cream to soften the taste. It worked beautifully, as she loved it, and I must admit, I liked it, too. I used two tablespoons vegetable oil and three small carrots. I didn’t have vegetable stock, so I used mild chicken stock. This is a recipe to make again and often.
Oct 17, 2011
We loved this easy-to-put-together soup. So delicious and nutritious. The recipe calls for 11 ounces of carrots, which comes out to be approximately four medium carrots. The 1/4 ounce of ginger, when finely chopped, is one rounded teaspoon. I used a vegetable bouillon cube and measured it to 1/2 teaspoon. It worked out wonderfully. I think water would have been good, as well, but you might want to increase the amount of cumin and coriander to give it a bit more flavor. All in all, this is a wonderful weeknight dinner or beautiful amuse bouche for a dinner party.
Oct 17, 2011
Delicious soup. Just delicious. Trust me, make this soup if you need something warm and comforting or restorative or just because you want something rich and creamy without being heavy. I had to simmer it a bit longer because my carrot slices were on the large side. They took about 10 minutes longer to soften. I’m thrilled this recipe serves two, but if necessary, it could be stretched to four as a starter. I served it swirled with a bit of sour cream for some tang and to add some additional richness.
Oct 17, 2011
I had never had carrot soup before. It had never appealed to me, but I thought I would give it a go. I wasn’t sure about the taste at first, thinking it needed something else but not knowing what, but by the time I had finished the bowl I was converted — I liked it as it was. It was quick and simple to make. It took just over 40 minutes to make (if you include getting the ingredients from the cupboards) and was delicious. I forgot to look up my body type, so I used 2 tsp of oil — a slightly rounded teaspoon — and three medium to large carrots (based on the sizes of the carrots in the box at the supermarket, which was of mixed sizes). I also used the vegetable stock as opposed to water or chicken stock. The soup was quite thick and thus quite filling, which made it a generous two portions. If you like your soup thinner, it could probably stretch to four portions with added water, but I feel that might take away some of the flavor.
Oct 17, 2011
I wasn’t going to like this recipe. I’m not a fan of dishes with a lot of coriander or cumin, I hate when I have never heard of an ingredient like pitta or vata, and here I was making soup that would serve only two people when, to me, soup only gets made in large batches. You dirty some pots and then you have soup on hand for days. I was wrong. Really wrong! This is delicious, quick, easy, and beautiful to look at. I honestly wasn’t sure why anyone would need to measure the amount of carrots, but I did, because I take my recipe testing seriously. It ended up being about four long, thin carrots, but 11 ounces is a bit exacting for a bowl of soup. I used a vegetable bouillon cube dissolved in water, because that’s what I had on hand.
The only drawback to this recipe of perfectly married flavors was that I had none left. Why make soup for two? This one needs to be doubled, or maybe tripled. Or else I hope there will be red lentil recipes upcoming on the site, because i have most of a bag left in my pantry after this recipe. Used an immersion blender to smooth the soup. Perfect!
Oct 17, 2011
This soup was prepared for the family, so I tripled the recipe for four soupaholics. For this I used six teaspoons of vegetable oil, six carrots, one teaspoon ginger and a homemade vegetable stock as liquid. It’s easy and fast to prepare this tasty soup; even beginners can prepare it and have a good homemade soup in minutes. It’ll remind you of some good Indian food. Although based on lentils, it’s not heavy. We topped it with cilantro and a spoonful of thick yogurt.
Oct 17, 2011
This was a super-tasty soup that was very simple to prepare. The blended lentils provided a nice creamy consistency and the spices paired perfectly with the carrots. Not knowing what kapha, pitta, and vata are, I used two tablespoons of olive oil, which worked well. I weighed out 1/4 ounce of ginger and measured it as 2 1/2 teaspoons. Eleven ounces of carrots measured out to be five medium carrots and 2 1/4 cups chopped. I used homemade vegetable stock. I rather liked that the recipe made just enough for two people, but I would likely double it in the future. I would scale back ever so slightly on the ginger next time, because I found it to be somewhat biting and overpowering. I would also consider using ghee or perhaps butter next time to provide a richer flavor to the soup. With some minor tweaks, I think it will be a perfect soup for this time of year.
Carrot and Lentil Soup Recipe © 2011 Anjum Anand. Photo © 2011 Lisa Linder. All rights reserved.